tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN July 11, 2014 4:00pm-6:01pm EDT
[inaudible conversations] >> ladies and gentlemen, let's give that the vice president a great thank you. [applause] and move on to our committee meeting. our next meeting will be starting very shortly. they both start at three so we are running a little delay. our committee on economic and development, and also at the same time education and workforce committee. later on tonight we have the wonderful entertainment at the lime and auditorium. see you soon. [inaudible conversations]
as you hearing a brief break in the governors meeting. coming out, coming up in the few minutes, the education and workforce committee is meeting to focus on the role of education and economic development. they are guest speaker will be lamar alexander, the senior republican on the senate education committee. the ng education committee is chaired by governor steve beshear. we will have that live for you when they start here on c-span2. until then a look at some of the opening news conference from earlier today at the nga with remarks from vice chair, colorado governor john hickenlooper. >> thank you, governor fallin. it's an and on a pledge t to wok with you on the past year as it was years before. i actually, governor fallin is the one who somehow, not sure how the logistics of somehow a
ended up vice chair through her, her pushing or, her -- away -- >> we work well together. >> we have worked together since i became governor. i think you were governor at the same time and worked on a number of issues. natural gas vehicles, water issues, great partner. governor haslam, we're so glad to be. i came here almost three years ago. i brought a team of my top step and we did a trade off. i done this with governor fallin as well. we go and we governors on they be democrat these guys may be republicans but we love to each other. without to show what our ideas are better and especially challenge the of the government to take idea and make it even better, which happens all the time. especially governor haslam sent me a picture of shiloh, a couple hours south of here, my great
grandfather, andrew, was a captain in the civil war, descended was called the hornet nest, allowed grant to get across the river. there's a statue or a janet increase. money my own business and one day i get this text with a picture from shaw the that governor haslam had said to me. and anyone who loves music, to be your in the grand ole opry and think about lester flat and earl scruggs and other people who played here, it just makes there on the back of my neck stand up just to be here. it's more intimate on tv. looks much bigger. it feels a lot like a church. also want to recognize -- my son is arriving today. this is really a wonderful
place. as our chair siskin with a very busy week ahead of us. we will meet throughout the weekend. creating jobs is front and center which i think every single governor is a theme you will see pretty much in every standing committee, pretty much everything we do. this afternoon governors on the economic and commerce committee will engage in a conversation with several ceos about action that states take to small, medium-sized enterprises create jobs and help grow economies. we know in order to compete in the global economy, we have to continue to strengthen but also to cultivate small and medium-size businesses. we also recognize that there's a critical role in small and medium-sized businesses to play with the overall economic ecosystem of our state. i think states can be
instrumental in fostering the business climate, making sure that a lot of these countries to compete not only in the domestic markets but in the international markets as well. along similar lines education and workforce committee are going to meet currently to discuss the effects, innovation, education and training programs can have on creating jobs, developing that 21st century workforce, pretty much every business is dependent on and thereby fueling economic developers and use the session to share best practices and producing homegrown talent and to make sure they can attract using the talent to attract businesses and entrepreneurs. senator lamar alexander will join the committee to discuss how states can leverage training programs and use those resources to enhance order to meet the labor demand. committee members will have a chance to interact with the current students showcasing
their career and technical skills throughout the meeting room your hands on application. on saturday what will turn our focus to improving the health of the nation while also improving or increasing the efficiency of health care on government employers and individuals. certainly we recognize as a country expand health care dramatically now have to focus on even as we improve quality, controlling costs. i think almost everything governor you'll see that would be a constant discussion. how to maintain and improve quality and sync done control costs. costs. during the health and human services committee session governors will explore the landscape without health care experts, number of industry leaders from rising health care costs to technological innovation, health reform, whole range of factors converging to change the way we pay for and deliver health care in this country. in the homeland security public safety committee will also meet on saturday afternoon to discuss
employing our nation's veterans. we remain committed to ensuring service members, veterans and their spouses receive adequate support throughout the lifecycle of the military and civilian career. a number of states have programs that we can take the best practices and the how do we apply them. two days ago we had 19 members of the army returned from iraq, all out of the military but before the mustard out they spent 18 week training program with united association of -- so they get to choose what state they want to live in and we guarantee them a job. so we will have 100% placement. there are a number of those programs in different states. we want to make sure we get the best practices and elevate them. certainly across the country governors are leading statewide efforts, i think it's fair to say in every state, to address the challenges any veteran and
also after they return home after leaving military service, and responsibly i think every one of us share. the homeland security and public safety section will give governors and opportunity share strategies to transition to civilian employment, discuss ways to strengthen the state partnership with key federal agencies and private sector employers to put our nation's veterans on the path forward to meaningful employment and long-term success, as the chair succumbing meaningful employment means a better education. also on saturday afternoon the natural resource we will meet to capitalize on the many recent advancement of america's energy sector our nation needs to update its electric grid to make more reliable, affordable, make it more reliable and affordable to a sure that we're able to use the most recent innovations in energy technology, that will allow governors the opportunity to examine a number of critical questions about the nation's
grid. they will have an opportunity share experiences and ask state solution and a national conversation about grid modernization. kind of like that term, grid modernization. on sunday the meeting will and with a closing session featuring the ceo of best buy who will talk with the governors about the future of main street, including making sure that we ensure brick and mortar businesses and online businesses are being treated equally, equally. one of the long-standing priorities of the nga is marketplace fairness, as much attack service as much as the question of fairness to make sure that those businesses that are brick and mortar aren't being unfairly disadvantaged by the tax system. marketplace fairness means
cornerstones -- stores would be on the same footing as online retailers. i think fair competition always means better outcomes for consumers. states, it helps states, encourage competition and it will preserve main street jobs. as you can see there are clearly a lot of work to be done, which is why i'm delighted to be here with our colleagues to discuss all this and certainly a lot more. grateful for all of you joining us as well. i'll turn it back to the chair and answer some questions. >> thank you, governor haslam and governor hickenlooper for being here today and will be happy to take questions the press might have about any of the issues that made we didn't get covered just now. [inaudible] >> introduce yourself and who you are with. >> is it on?
okay. chat with the tennessean. you mentioned a call to comes to finance infrastructure. is this a formal statement or what exactly? >> we sent a letter to congress saying that it's essential that governors have certainty with transportation planning throughout our nation. as we all know the transportation trust fund is running out of money. in fact, it will run out the first of august and we're very concerned about that, and states, cory transportation is important and infrastructure in the individual states, and building roads and bridges and water projects, infrastructure, and it's important that congress act and the need to find a solution so that we can give states certainty as to how much money we will have, or if we're going to have any money and how much it's going to be. >> if i could just follow up. i'm brian. what does it mean to your state if the trust fund is an
expanded? what will it mean in terms of jobs lost and projects delayed or canceled? >> the state of oklahoma, which i can speak of, we have an eight year transportation plan which we allocate different projects according to priorities for our state. and we find it that way. so could mean a delay in our various projects to be a delay in being able to fix up our roads and our bridges. it's essential that we just have some type of resolution. we are hearing congress may do another temporary fix once again but even for the private sector when they're trying to let contracts and trying to gear up and hire people that they need to work on road construction projects, yet uncertainty coming out of washington, d.c., that certainly affects the private sector and our states and our state budgets. governors, do you have anything else in? >> we have a short and long-term issue. long-term, more fuel-efficient vehicles rolled off the assembly line, the amount of gasoline
will go down. good thing for clean air but most of our construction resources come from that tax. as that goes down we will see that exacerbate. short term, in terms of what was immediately, several thousand major projects across the country, hundreds of thousands of jobs but i think most importantly we lose, we fall behind in the basic infrastructure that's necessary that our businesses can be productive, have more traffic jams, long detours, all kinds of inefficiencies you inject into our enterprise system year and we will see consequences of that. so it will retard the growth of our economy, and again you won't see it all at once but over a period of time it will have a significant negative affect. >> i think the final piece, basic safety question. nobody really thinks about roads and bridges, and other conditions until they fall
behind. there can be a few things that you can see the parallel around as quickly as a bridge that hasn't been restructured on a timely basis. >> high, governor fallin. could you talk a little bit about common core? the nga was a founder or one of the founders, and you and a couple other governors have changed their mind. can you talk about why and they can pressure i think a lot of governors are facing with regard to those standards? >> first of all common core was developed back before i was governor back and around 2009-2010 by governors, educators and business led across the nation with the goal in life, raising academic standards to our nation making sure that we have a quality educated workforce for the united states to compete. not only among our states but certainly internationally. and, of course, we all believe, still believe in that has
governors. as we've seen common core has become a divisive issue in our nation with the concer concernet the federal government is trying to mandate down the state's standards. we certainly hear those concerned in that there is states. we don't have an official position, other than we believe that, the inch a police we have to have high standards, rigor, transparency, accountability in the classroom. we have to do a better job of educating our students, making sure they graduate from high school without the need of being remediated, that we have more college degrees completions, certainly career technology certificates but in the meantime i think all governors are listening to their brothers and constituents back home that are concerned about the federal overreach into our state. so peachy governor will do what's in the best interest of their states, constituents and the voters and the states. in my state of oklahoma we did have legislation that passed by an overwhelming majority in the house and senate to repeal and
replace common core with oklahoma academic standards. and as i told our citizens in our state we will do everything possible to make sure that we even do better than the standards that were set in common core, to make sure that we do have academic rigor, accountability, transparency, and there are some other states that are also doing the same thing. but it's up to each individual governor to do what they think is in the best interest, working alongside educators, voters and certainly the private sector. >> will. [inaudible] spent the evidence came in when we had no child left behind and the money tied to the waiver for no child left behind, and he was tied with federal funding back to the states and that i think was the beginning of concern about federal overreach into states and education became a concern. >> i would argue here that this
is a case of the nga blank the right role. so the nga was involved in the initiation -- >> you can see all of the news conference from earlier today online at c-span.org. we will take you back live to nashville and the national governors association meeting. >> sent to governors and events that can also be found in the blue binder in front of all of you. they include the agenda, the background information, the updates on state and federal actions under this committee's jurisdiction and materials of our speakers. to my right is stephen parker, legislative director of the education and workforce committee. if you have any question, need any assistance in this area, see stephen. today we are honored to be joined by u.s. senator lamar alexander, country music television's leadership folks, and students and staff from the academies of nashville. before we proceed to our agenda,
governor sandoval all and all -- and i want to update our agenda the receptors commit in the 140 days between the winter meeting at our session today. first on the wia set-aside. we aimed to restore the 15% of workforce investment act, or wia set-aside. we use that momentum of the recent partial increase of the set-aside to lobby for the full restoration. in june, nga released a report illustrating how states are using wia set-aside funding to revise and expand critical state workforce initiatives. due to all of our hard efforts, governors were able to secure a major victory on the set-aside. we are pleased to report that a bipartisan, wia reauthorization bill passed the senate two weeks
ago at and on wednesday of this week, that same bill passed the house and is awaiting the president's signature. for the first time in more than 15 years, it appears that the most significant federal workforce law will be updated. updated to give governors more flexibility to meet the training needs of their states workforce. after months of negotiations, senator alexander, in -- and a bipartisan group of senate and house leaders, crafted a bill that includes reaffirmation of the governors 15% set aside, preserves the governor's authority over state workforce boards, and includes the nga common measures proposal. which consolidates more than 100 outdated indicators in four core measures. this is an important bill for governors. governors are mentioned more than 160 times throughout the
legislation and nga has been working with congress on reauthorization for a decade. senator alexander, we applaud your leadership to give governors more tools to promote our job creation and spur economic growth and get our people back to work. and let's give the senator a round of applause. [applause] >> now on career and technical education, with congress expected reauthorization of the perkins career and technical education act, the committee developed principles on cge that aimed to preserve state led, state designation career and technical education innovation while ensuring governors play a more central role in perkins. now at this point i want to turn the floor over to vice chair governor brian sandoval to show some the additional committee accomplishments. >> thank you for your leadership on this committee. it's an honor to serve with you
and my fellow governors on this very important committee. first i want to talk about early childhood education. in march the committee began developing principle to ensure a strong state role as congress considers early education proposals. our principles proposed the governors take the lead role in any state, federal partnership and that any state, federal program recognized the current significant state investments in early education. next, the vice president workforce review. as we just heard in the opening session, the vice president has been conducting a comprehensive review of federal workforce programs. in april the nga submitted a memorandum to the vice president with a recommendation -- eight recommendations to provide states with more tools to meet the needs of the state economies. we are continuing to work with the white house to develop a strategy for implementation of the recommendations. finally, see acg.
the committee took steps to fix the college access college grant program to bolster state led efforts to ensure college access and affordability. governor beshear, ghent, it was a pleasure to work with you this year. it's clear the committee's progress that we should continue to work together i think there been a great amount of success as i think this is an example of bipartisanship and will be very meaningful for the people of america and of our state. thank you, sir. >> thank you, governor. today said alexander will discuss recent congressional action on education and workforce and a governors can work with congress on these issues. after his presentation will open the floor for discussion between governors and the senator. then we'll have the country music television discussing their partnership with national schools and how career and technical education is proving to be a source of workers high skill jobs in central tennessee.
and, finally, we'll see presentations from students showing off recent cte projects. now i'd like to call upon our host, governor haslam, to welcome our first guest. >> thank you all and we're glad you are in session. i can think of very few people who is more about to address this committee and senator alexander. to begin with is a former nga chair, and the last time the nga was here 30 years ago, then governor alexander hosted a meeting, and he's gone on to a few other things, but it helps to know a little bit of where he came from. his mother was a teacher. his father was in elementary school principal. he became governor but after that he was secretary of education for the united states. he was the university of tennessee college president, so he has seen education and its issues from a variety of standpoints besideseing
ranking member of the senate health, education, labor and pensions committee which primarily deals with education issues in washington. but most importantly to us isn't this. you all should be jealous of tennessee for a lot of reasons in my opinion, but one of those is that where the u.s. senator who used to be a governor. ask him looking i guess governor -- governor chafee serve with lamar in the senate and governor branstad serve as governor together with lamar as well. so you know of what i speak. but it is an incredible advantage for tennessee to have somebody in washington used to be a governor. we talk all the time about being washington understands issues from our viewpoint. senator alexander literally does that. he has stood up on the floor of us in on more than one occasion and said your vote on this would be different if you were sitting in a state capital having to let this. because of that we are very grateful. it's my honor to introduce our former governor, now our
senator, and my friend, lamar alexander. [applause] >> thank you, bill. this is a treat for me. and i'll keep in mind what our friend said, he gets in trouble only when he opens his mouth. so i will try to be brief. i know i can learn a lot more from the governors and they can for me. you can see why we are so happy in tennessee to bill haslam as governor. he's tackling some real terrific issues. issues i never could have imagined dealing with, and he's gotten that done and everybody still likes them. it's a tremendous come he's a tremendous leader. he's right, terry and i were both there in 1984, and kerry has been back since. he's visited us in east tennessee and he came down --
the elderly brothers grew up in iowa, shadow as i remember and then they moved to knoxville where bill is from. bill was mayor. i got mad at each other and they finally reunited about 15 years ago when i invited kerry to come down. we saw that reunion. good to see terri, and, of course, i sort with lance, others here whom i know. if you've been here in 1984, many perl would have welcomed you. and some of you won't remember many perl. but she was my neighbor. she lived next door. people ran for governor, they live next door to many perl. it had the price tag on a. this is the story she would've told. schuett said i was riding in an elevator minding my own business and this tourist from kentucky gets on and he looks me up and down and says has anybody ever told you, you look a lot like mini pearl? she said, i said yes, sir, they
have. and he looked me up and down again and said, i'll bet it makes you mad, don't get? [laughter] that was such a good start, i told all over iowa. scott, you might be the ones turning it around. [inaudible] >> that's what i did. you probably heard in utah. you are exactly right. let me see if i can do to i wanted to make four points. let me see how quickly i can make it. went i think about my job as united states senator given my background, i think about how can i give bill haslam more tools to be a better governor? because i know if i give them those tools he will do something with them. and i think of the federal government in the internet age as a place where we ought to invest in things that empower states and people to do things for themselves. kind of in the way apple
created ipad with that telling you what the app is, you can create an app and a lot of people can use it. so here are four tools that we worked on, three in a bipartisan way, one is not -- one is partisan in washington by don't think it is so much among governors. so let me mention the spirit one is marketplace fairness. which is the issue for me, does the state have a right to decide for itself what it wants to collect taxes that are already owed. that may come up in the next couple of weeks in the united states senate, and i would say especially to the republican governors, this is a good time to call your republican senator and say, let us make our own decisions about our own tax base. that's our business. that's not your business. i can have a so-called conservative washington tell me they didn't trust states to make those decisions. wait a minute, i don't know anyone in tennessee who trust
washington to make attacks decision. that's never one. that's an important tool for you to a sufficient tax base to make your own decision, to avoid raising income taxes, avoid raising property taxes. that's your business. that's not our business. that's never one. the second is the workforce investment act. that's another bipartisan to a competent. we got that done. it looks like you can get things done even in this united states senate. our committee has gotten a lot done. we have past 20 bills, 18 were passed by the senate, 14 signed into law. that's almost as much as the whole rest of the united states senate did and we have a divided committee. all the liberal democrats over with tom harkin. you've got rand paul india on the right. still we can agree on a lot of things. we get on this. i remember when our former democratic governor came up and talk to me. he said when i came in and i look at the money that came to the workforce investment act,
into our 13 local boards, 75, one stop centers, he said i just threw my hands up and i told the commissioner, do the best you can. i'll bet a lot of you have had that same experience. it's a lot of money. it's $10 billion. but governor haslam, $147 million on his number one issues which is how does he connect job skills with the job seekers. so we tried to make it easy for him and all of you to use that money. we a limited 50 programs, eliminate mandates on the size of the board compositions, restored the proficiency you can take 15% of the money and use it for your own innovation. that's $400 million. local boards can transfer 100% of the two biggest funds between the two funds. took six state plans, took them into one reporting requirement. more simpler. you've got more control.
i would've gone for the really for the state of local control but we got a long ways ahead. so that's the second, in a bipartisan way we been able to get done. here's a third tool. this is 20 million american families fill this out every you. this is what you fill out to get a federal grant for a loan to go to college. it takes three or four hours and you fill it out every year. somebody august if it you probably made a mistake so they don't send you money for the first semester until the second semester. in tennessee i would guess we have about 400,000 tennesseans, families who goes out. hold this opinion he grew. i was at an editorial board meeting in knoxville the other day and the editor of the business manager and the other person any meaning at all fill this out for the own kids. everybody who fills out the application for governor haslam's promise program.
is promise you can go to community college free. they all have to fill that out. everyone who gets a hope a scholarship based on merit in tennessee, they all have to fill that out. the testimony we have had is that all you need to know in order to know 90% of what you need to know to get this money out is the answer to questions. what is what's the size of your family and what was your income last year? senator bennet of colorado, a democratic senator who was a school superintendent in denver, and i proposed legislation that would turn this into this. that would save billions of hours. [applause] will and we also, bill this will make a real difference in your program because they have said about half the sins of a pell grants more are eligible, probably very intimidated by this and don't want to do it. and so we'll take some of the money we save with our subjugation and had year-round
pell grants, pell grants you can move at your own pace. there will be one loan, one grant, and you will be able to apply in your junior year of high school rather than your senior year. right now, and this is, this happened by very well-intentioned people who reauthorize the higher education act they signed it is a good idea, let's put it on the form and your 20 million people filling this out every year. we hope to do that next year. last, all three of those are bipartisan. this next one is partisan. i'll do it quickly. it has to do with elementary and secondary education. the national governors association has a lot to do with it. it's what should the role of washington be in determining standards, curriculum, performance standards, accountability systems, and teacher evaluation in kentucky,
nevada, tennessee, what should the role be? in 1984 when you asked, it was a year after a nation at risk. that's what secretary of education said there's a foreign power, have done, given us the deal for schools we have come we would consider it an act of war. all the governors get busy trying to change the schools and everyone of our state. bill clinton was in arkansas. dick riley was in south carolina. bob grant in florida. we were all doing basically the same thing. in 1985-86 at the nga meeting i was the chairman and bill clinton was the vice chairman, for the first time since the beginning of the nga we focused the entire meeting on a single subject, education. time results was what we agreed to do. for five years we worked on that agenda. president bush had a national summit. kerry was chairman, voluntary
national, and i was education secretary a couple years later and i remember writing president bush, this opinion about i'm not being partisan, i just telling you the way it is, the democratic education bill. i said i recommend you veto it because it creates at least the beginning of a national school board that could make day-to-day school decisions on curriculum, discipline, teacher training, textbooks, classroom materials a federal arrest to be dictating how to operate a local school board that does not make schools better. that was 1992. then moving forward rapidly, 94, states that another summit. 96, again, governors of both parties. we need national standards to work together to create. then in 2002 no child left behind. still states have the ball in the that was a lot of pressure a lot of federally required reporting. and then 43 states agreed and worked on common standards.
34 worked on two sets, rhode island can pick one, kentucky to pick another, or you could pick something else if you wanted. 44 states in common accountable standards, but he became the problem. the combination of race to the top and waivers for no child left behind have created in my opinion in effect a national school board. the u.s. department of education that you over a barrel. if you need relief from no child left behind, which all of you do, it's not workable today, you have to ask permission and then they require you to do a lot of things. they require you to have certain standards. they require you to have certain performance. they require you certainly do with local performance schools and they require you to do tj valuations a certain way. teacher evaluation requirements. i'm through. i'm going to stop talking here, but here's my point.
i went through this teacher evaluation stuff in 1983, four, five and six. tennessee was the first state to pay teachers more for teaching well. it's not easy to do. we got 10,000 teachers voluntarily to go up the career ladder and be master teachers but if we have a federal government second-guessing is all the way of we would have never gotten anything done. we don't need that advice. they don't want to do any better than we do, and really they don't know how to do it at all. guess we are all pioneering a little bit we would try to find a fairway to reward outstanding teachers, give them 10 months and 11 months contracts, pay them more for being good. good. so there's a 10th of a penny in washington. is it partisan difference right now but i don't think the democratic and republican governors would have the same difference of opinion democratic and republican senators have. so i bring this to your attention, and you may want to talk to your senators between
now and the end of the year. we need to fix no child left behind. we need to get rid of the way, but we don't need to do it in a way that creates more of a national school board. we have two very distinct points of view right now in washington. so on market place fairness we are bipartisan. on this we are partisan. on changing the workforce act, we got that done in a bipartisan way. this we need help on. i believe we can over the last 30 years, governors ought to be in charge. we should fix no child left behind when we do. and when we do we don't need a national school board to replace governors, state school boards, local school boards and classroom teachers. those are my tools. >> senator, thanks very much. we are going to throw the floor open for questions, and i'm going to take the privilege of chair of asking the first one.
once again, thank you for pushing through the full 15% set aside. as you mentioned it was done in a bipartisan fashion. could you give us your insights on the second step, which is paying for it in terms of appropriation. are we going to be able to actually find that 15% in the near future? >> yes, i think you will. $9.5 billion. it's a big number, and in the current appropriation bill, we are hung up and i will get into details about that procedure in the senate, about appropriations, but that's the number that we are working with. if for some reason we didn't get the appropriations process done properly, they would be a continuing resolution and they would be at that number. so once this authorizing law
signed by the president, that will change the rules of the game and you'll be able to spend the money that is a fable according to the new rules which give you a lot more flexibility. >> great. brian, do you have a question? >> thank you. senator, thank you for your presentation. i don't know if you the opportunity listen to the vice president but he talked about career and college readiness. there has been a big emphasis as you pointed out today with regard to college but perhaps the career part gets left behind. what can congress do to help the states to raise the awareness and visibility importance of career readiness in our schools speak with you will see a great example of it in a few minutes here in the nashville schools. and that's what has to come from. see, i don't think, what purpose can do is what i care. we need to be thinking not as governors in washington but we need to be thinking of senators
who are spending federal dollars in a way that empowers you to figure that out. and figures out a national school district figures out. so what i've introduced, for example, is a piece of legislation that would permit you to take 80 of the federal programs that have federal education dollars right now and great a $2100 scholarship for every low income child in your state. that would probably be about one-fifth of them. that's a lot of money, and map-21 hundred dollars would follow that child to the school the child attends. we're not going to tell you that shut to put in a school choice plan or do this or do that. that's your decision. that money will follow the low income child to school the child attends, then the school can follow your innovation and your leadership and figure out how to solve the problem. that's what i mean by giving you a tool. we sit through this all the time in our -- is a good idea.
let's make everybody do it. the are one of thousand public schools in 14,000 school districts? we have governors. we of school boards. you don't get smarter flying an hour to washington. so that's the we should do. we should let you figure it out and give you the tools. >> thank you. senator, it's great to have you here. and i do recall when you in utah running for president, and you were very well received, and part of your appeal was your proficiency on the panel. and as i'm here in tennessee and see the great talents in national, i see where you fit in so good so we need to your plan and we want to hear bill saying. make us feel right at home. >> the most musical state based on my precinct evaluation are utah and iowa. really, because people learn to sing in their churches and in
the energies in both states. >> well, we appreciate your being here today and talk about wrote an important issue that is affecting us all. let me just say we have a little discussion or debate about this very thing, and congress hasn't reauthorized the elementary and secondary education act, ea, for seven years. part of the challenge that we have is states are frustrated with no child left behind and kind of by default have been embracing this waiver you talk about. i guess there is a question. one, can the president even grant a waiver? constitutional ago are we going around the law and saying congress is not in what they should be doing to fix the problem so i'll just grant you a way for out of the law. that's one issue. the second issue is why don't we just block grant the money? i agree with you tha but everyby
has a great ideas and next thing you know we christmas tree ornament all these bills and it gets unwieldy. we have different demographics in utah than tennessee and around the country so we got to have our own program. and why can we not get back to we have done at least previously where the federal government says look, we will help you, gather money, push it out there to equalize particularly help those who are maybe rural or poor areas of our country so everybody has an opportunity of a good education. give us the money without any strength. when you talk about the federalization, national program, it's the money with the strings that nationalizes the programs. >> that would require an election, and maybe do. to do. i agree with you, but that's the difference of opinion we have in washington. take the worst forced grant to the house passed a jobs bill which moved a long way further
toward what you just described, with $10 billion of workforce money. but when he came to the senate which has a different political composition, there were a lot more washington rules. our compromise moved a lot closer to the house. so the difference on the elementary secondary education act of you got a bill that was passed by the committee that i'm the ranking republican on, senator harkin is the chairman. 1150 pages, 150 more rules and regulations, much more of a national school board, 12 senators voted for all of one party. 10 senators voted for the one that i offered which was 200 pages which moves all those decisions back to states and to local governments. so it's a political difference of opinion about, and it's not always, some republicans get carried away and they also want mandates from washington to i've seen plenty of examples of that
but fundamentally democrats feel a responsibility to have more rules and regulations with the money they send back and republicans agree with what you just said. >> again, i think maybe there's a difference between government and the partisanship you see in washington, d.c. for maybe a variety of reasons. i think most governors say look, let us spend the money as we see fit -- >> oh, i know. >> democrat or republican alike say hey, listen to us. we are probably pretty smart people with her own unique demographics but we don't need a one size fits all solution to give us the money it made we can't put it in the public safety, we can't put it in building roads. it's got to put into education so i can see some general parameters but let us work out the details in our own responsibility. >> i completely agree. >> senator, secretary, governor alexander -- [laughter] piano player.
those for other topics come you crazy, pay teachers more for teaching well, appropriate criticisms or however you going to phrase that. dig a little deeper about where those future lines are because i think you will find us very interested -- is your lines. first of all a tracking the best and most capable people to take public educators agree. since 1984 to know one of the faults that has occurred in this country has been this shift away. when i was chair of years ago we brought in education advisers from countries that at much higher scores than us in math and science, and kind of went through with them what, why. one of the reasons was the point of teachers and they pay them more and it was held in higher esteem in the public view as a career and whatnot. i know you talked about the no child left behind in that sense and the waivers and whatnot.
carry that discussion, define deeper into it because i think you will find us as governors very willing to get more, much more involved. weekly want to get as much productivity out of our schools as possible. we are all looking for positive reform agendas on public education. to find that a little more of and how you, what you see the hangups are as far as getting to moving in that area at the state level. >> the most difficult thing to do is to relate students achievement to teacher performance in a fair way. that's not easy to do. and it's obviously should be done. everyone knows that. that's common sense but it's not easy to do. so the question is should washington try to say, not there anymore, but the seven things that you need to do in order to
achieve that, or should we try to -- that they are. or should we try -- [inaudible] all right. or should we give, shui make it easy for you to use federal dollars to figure that out for yourselves? i think the latter. i thought we did a good job 30 years ago. i think governor haslam has done a better job, but one thing we could do is take a title ii money, title i you have a plan. title ii is really for helping teachers, teacher personnel development. and say, you can use that money however you want to develop your own system of teacher evaluation and principled evaluation and performance. that's quite a bit of money. right now it really goes in to reducing class size in most states. you could use it if you choose to for the purpose but i'm reluctant for washington to try to tell you how to do that when
nobody really knows how to do that. i just think it's much more likely to come out of wisconsin or iowa or tennessee or missouri than it is out of the department of education. and the problem is, let's be blunt about it. you got this big pushback right now on, there's the perception which is a fact that washington is in affect requiring states to adopt certain standards and certain performance levels and certain teacher evaluation systems, and people in tennssstu about common core are related to the perception that washington is making you do it. if the thought was if i don't like the academic standards, i can go to governor haslam or governor walker and they can fix it, but i think most of us would relax. and then on the other side the teachers unions get very upset about the evaluation as it's coming down from anywhere,
really. that it's better on a precinct by precinct, school district by school district basis. >> i agree with you, but the way to get through this is by carrots, sticks. i think the dialogue around this about either underperforming schools or teachers that are doing a good job and it's a much easier dialogue if we are aiming higher and putting targets and move them up. i think it shifts the frame of the discussion. so we are looking for ways in which exactly what you said, pay teachers more for teaching well. interesting, your phraseology because that way you have carrots. positive places. >> our first was voluntary, you didn't have to do. so we at 10,000 teachers who did it. you're right, no child left behind got to be like catching people doing things wrong instead of catching people doing things right. >> of course the math problem
guaranteed in the end the math problem is you fail. you run out of time. >> just following up on that point. on the fourth of your legislation, the partisan one, is there an actual bill and does the bill repealing no child left behind? >> they aren't competing bills. in the help committee, we had a good discussion about it, and i support moving old bills to the floor and was having a debate and try to a minute of put together with the house. democrats have ago, about 1150 pages long, a lot of -- a lot of new regulations and new programs and new mandate. >> how about your build? >> 200 pages long and is all the responsibility for measuring whether teachers and schools are succeeding or failing back to states but it does keep the reporting requirements where you'd disaggregate whether in des moines or milwaukee the
african-american kids, et cetera, how are they doing, because i think we need to know that. but it's what you get above that is your business. that's a big difference of opinion. >> is the support from teachers union for that? >> the teachers union, you'll have to ask them, but they like our bill in one respect better because it doesn't mandate teacher evaluation. it allows it, it allows you to use title ii money for the purpose but it doesn't do this. arne duncan is a very good man. he cares about schools and he is i think, governor george w. bush tried to be a little too much of a governor of the united states when he came with no child left behind. i think arne duncan is trying to be a school superintendent of the united states. these are things you should do as governor or school superintendent but not from washington. but the answer is yes, we have bills in the house is a bill that's a lot the senate republican bill.
>> and to follow up, i had the same feeling before washing hands things down to the state and local communities they should fulfill what they promised back in the '70s, and that's to get the funding promised 40%. i've been beating on that drum since -- >> that's right. >> the new mandate, so give any discussion about that? >> well, i would relieve some of the mandates, but senator harkin of course that's been his pride and joy, so he has really allowed that. senator tim scott has introduced a bill that i'm a cosponsor of which would allow the considerable federal dollars that go to children with disabilities to follow the child to school. if you have a down syndrome child in first grade and you're happy with that school because that school seems to meet the needs of a child, then they federal dollars, your share of
the federal dollars would go to that school, giving the parent a choice. so that would be one way to assist this bill. >> thank you. >> other questions? how about one more? [laughter] >> go for it. >> you talked about the forms, and consolidating it down to the simple science. money is also important for these pell grants. are we keeping up with the rising tuition and the percentage that pell grants used to contribute to a person's college aid? >> i'm glad you brought that up, link. i think yes. i mean, there's a lot of misinformation out about a much it cost to go to college. i think governor haslam will tell you that it's already
almost -- community college is almost already free. people just don't know it. >> if you can figure out that form. if you figure out that form, the gap is lots more than most people know. >> right. and so he was shrewd enough to say we want to change the perception. he's saying, i'm speaking for them, if i want to increase the graduation rate and the job skills, i want more people in college. i just checked, half the students of all states have a pell grants and half don't. that's probably the. there are probably a lot more eligible, but the community college tuition is only $3600. that's the average in the country. that pell grants can go up to $5600. and the average student loan is $27,000 for a four year degree. the average car loan is $27,000. i don't hear people saying the economy is going to fall because everybody else 27,000 out on the corner. a card appreciate and you get
$1 million more in your lifetime if you go to a four-year school. so we spend 100 billion a year in loans, which is to be paid back, at 33 or 34 billion in pell grants, up to $5600. even student athletes, this is one of the to the ncaa, you may not know this but the university of tennessee and vanderbilt student athletes who were eligible to get a pell grants up to $5600 on top of their athletic scholarship. so there's a lot of money out there. and in our plan, link, what with going to do we will get rid of the subsidized loan as our proposal because most students have them both. that will save $41 billion. so they will spend $41 billion on funding the cost of larger number of students who we think will apply for pell grants because of this, and a year-round pell grant which you will find your community college folks really like.
she is the vice president of public affairs at country music television where she leads the corporate social responsibility initiatives and oversees government affairs. she's garnered national attention and industry for the power of one campaign and the motivating a million volunteers across the u.s. and the network support of education and initiatives including cmt and involvement with the academies of nashville. we are also going to invite robin who has been the executive principle of nashville's high school since 2009 and has received national recognition for its transformational leadership of the academies of nashville including obtaining national status from the national career academy collection.
thanks for coming and taking the time to come and speak. you've got the floor. >> thank you governor. i never thought when i took my job at country music television years ago i would be addressing this esteemed panel and i'm usually more laid-back than this so bear with me. we are so excited to be here to showcase what true public and private partnerships can do to have the business community help support the most important part of the community which is educating our children. when the academies were launched here it was a pretty amazing piece of organization if you will between the metro national school, the national chamber of commerce and the nonprofit partners.
basically nine principles came and said the high schools are failing and we need help. we study the academies of nashville. so this is a way to make sure that every single child in high school and nashville is afforded the same opportunity for advancement, no matter who they are, where they live, what their circumstances are and it's pretty transformative and i think it's been pretty amazing for us because as people that work in the corporate sector were told all the time how the schools are failing, we need your help and all we've ever been asked is for contribution money wise how can we do this. and the academies, the beauty of it is systemic integration into partnership with differences throughout the school and the lending of expertise.
they have open conversations and the transparency they are so that we can help support the work for the students. they are approximately 82,000 students. 56 on free and reduced lunch. they have 15,000 students per the school employees. that may be surprising to a lot of you, but the snapshot of the high school in 2009 when we started their the year prior to the tenure first of all is a 500,000 square-foot building. it took me two years to figure out how to get around it. it's all very confusing.
that's one thing. number two, prior to the tenure they had five principles in one year. five. to say that it was chaos was an understatement. so, our smart school system and chamber went down and recruited at this lovely gentle man who is going to go through retirement in his home state of texas. if you've had experience in the academies there, then obviously we need great leadership for any change to be taking place. and this is what robin was given when he started. 2500 students, title i, high-priority 61% of free and reduced lunch. lunch. look at the demographics. 68% graduation rate and 2.7 from outside the zone and 41% with an eight ct composite of 19 or above which the 19 is the
requirement for the minimum promised scholarship is that why? so what this group of private partnerships between the chamber came up with is they looked for the partnership in the advancement of learning and i think this is the brilliance of the model and i think it can be scaled into any of your communities and has been successful. i'm proud of nashville because we are the first city in the country that has taken it to scale in all high schools but one. maybe we are a little crazy but it looks like it's working out pretty well. so redesign the high schools so what you have been speaking about not just about college but career ready and giving children exposure to careers they might not have thought about before. transforming, teaching and
learning is project-based learning in the classroom and the business leadership so this is where we come in and i think that's a pretty great part of the process so redesigning high schools, what does that mean blacks your freshman year you go to freshman academy. can you imagine walking into that 500,000 square-foot building and seeing that? you are put together with your freshman colleagues and learn everything from how to approach an adult, how to learn the soft skills of how to behave and they already start talking about college and career as soon as possible to let in the door. ten through 12 grade of the best part of the presentation will be after we stopped talking. what lovely students in the back
row. there are four different academies of a different focus so if you are interested in broadcast journalism you can go into that academy in all of your academic classes -- the beauty of the career technical education is it blends in with your academic classes so that isn't a separate entity it is altogether. the teachers teach a common planning time. it was new to me they didn't plan together prior to this and as people that work in business you have to know what everyone is doing. there were some teachers when we started that didn't eve didn't h other's names in the building. creating assistant principals over each academy and an academy coach i like to call the axle in the middle of the field who partners with the business community to engage them and filin tofill the needs there and sometimes translate the japanese to english of business speak versus education speak and then
offering the workforce so we work with the chamber to identify with the work needs are so that we are preparing the kids in our schools for real high wage jobs in nashville and there are ten areas of practice which we are very proud we are the first model academy. we are proud of ourselves so the transforming, teaching and learning you will see here this is our friend but part of this is we bring the teachers into our business to learn about what we do for a living making tv. teachers have been in the classroom their entire careers have been about teaching but they don't understand production of television. this i is any postproduction ara where you edit content and make sure the audio looks good,
sounds good, excuse me. we learned something from the teachers using project-based learning basically yo you have o make had tomake a plate of lotty using chopsticks because that is how precise you have to be with everything just so the teachers could remember it and then he would throw in the weird things so you're editing and then you have a sponsor that wants to be part of your program and all of a sudden you are put with something different so transforming, teaching and learning that is one of the examples we had heads of all of the different departments talks to the teachers and it kicked off the interdisciplinary project for the year are the teachers and their students so back to the transforming, teaching and learning they take it back to the school and we have eight cmt music awards program that was in june each
year. the teachers work with the students to model their own digital design communication show with the students. that sounds fun but if you look at it what they do is they take a central question that informs all of the classroom studies so whether you are math or in your english class or your own broadcasting class you're talking about the same thing so it's reinforced so the question is how should excellence be determined? they look between the popular vote and electora the electoralr the popular vote and the judging and see the difference between data. if you look behind these gentlemen you will see the design of a logo that was done in their geometr geometry class. we had the art designers creative team talk to them about spatial design and how you have to figure out all that and apply that to geometry and they use their geometry computer program to do that.
then i finally getting kids into our office is we try to treat cmt as an extension of the campus. these are some students that came in with job shadow experiences so they get to identify what pathways so whether they want to be on the creative pathway or broadcasting the shadow people within our office and then this is the part that is important about it especially with our upcoming mayor and the head of schools is going to move on at this point and we want this to not be just the education thing that happens every two years. we want to ensure that it's there. there are 200 plus business partners all over nashville that are this intrinsically intertwined into the different
academies based on their business needs so it's hard to read but it is a pretty amazing structure. first there's the advisory boards of every academy has an advisory board made up of business partners, students, teachers by the administrators e administrators identify with the needs of the students are and they reported into the partnership councils which are organized by business areas and the national chamber of commerce oversees that so we are part of ththe council into pairs and engineering council etc. so any issues are elevated up to that level so we can identify things that he might need to help and also make sure we are keeping the pathways involving according to what the work force development is and to advocate on behalf of the schools the ceo champions for example every single state has an issue with transportation and a students at
the academie academy's and next6 will have the choice to go to an academy outside of your zone and choice transportation and an ability to get there by working with our partners and metro transit authority so we have been trying to advocate legislation to make it easier for career and technical teachers for example a nurse isn't going to leave his or her job to teach part-time in a school so ill be beating back so they can get in. this is a snapshot in 2013. there are a few less students but not much. we are still title i that we are in good standing based on the scores. it's a level five school which is the highest on the evaluation standards into the highest
possible score is at 60% free and reduced lunch but as of last year because we don't have the data from this year 73% graduation rate was 6.4 students so this used to be the high school that you are embarrassed you went to. now everyone in the town is tired of hearing about it because we are all over the place. we had the president of the united states coming to visit that is when we knew we had to be something right. when people wanted to come back into children were coming back from private schools to experience this great stuff and we have increased our hct scores by 8% so this is why we do it and i have to turn over to robin. but sarah was honored by the president in a speech when he came. she's the first to graduate from her family and it's because of her contact with one of our
amazing producers she was in the principals office the entire freshman year with a bad attitude but he wanted to be part of the show. he bonded with the teacher, graduated and went on to postsecondary. jack is an example of a candidate has done fine either way it wanted to do an internship at cmt so we said we have to get your grades up and stop slacking off and he graduated with all a's and they are all in school right now so without further ado i will introduce this man who is the one on the ground making it happen with our awesome students and yointo you were going to ben away by them. >> this is what it's about us to see what the students are doingg but first, governor, thank you very much for adding us present. i want to take this time to thank the governor he and his wife both took time to visit the campus at the high school to see -- nanay has been interviewed by
the students. students. >> he was interviewed when he came to visit. if you want to learn to fly planes, be a master chef, investigate a crime scene, come to the high school because we can teach you. students are doing all kinds of things tied to the business world. one of the things key to education today's students want it to be relevant. why am i learning? would never ask the question why. we did what we were told. that is in today's students. today's student wants to know why we are doing what we are doing and you have to be able to so that to whatever opportunities lie for them after they graduate school. i'm not going to spend a lot of time talking -- that the first. [laughter] >> i could talk for a couple of hours of the things we have going on but i won't do that. i will tell you the time the academy has had to the business in nashville and the representation and support that
we get from the businesses in our community is one of the things that has made us turn the corner. they come to the schools and classrooms and told the students that it's going to take to be successful. it's not just hearing it from the principal or the teacher, they are hearing from people coming in from the real world and that's the type you have to make. the education has to be tied to the real world experience and that is for the relative comes back in. with the support of the school board and i have a school board member right here other things are going on and the support we get from the governor and the mayor, things are going up every year. academic standards are unbelievable in the years i've been a part of it. when i came here we were under restructuring and we were a little one school. we were about to be taken over by the state. five years later we are now a recognized school for the progress that we have made and we are in good standing with the state and we are the only high
school for four years in a row to reach that level five standard being a top school according to the state standards in tennessee so it is a great teaching staff, unbelievable teachers in the building and the students that are willing to put the time and effort to make a change for what's good and i'm going to introduce to you the students but i want to make sure the governors are still here. take the time to go back and see what they have to show you. first a hospitality finance academy we have abigail, we have clarence, brady and bernice that will be back there with the hospitality and science. health science and law i have jordan, emily. then from the science communication -- >> the cmt academy --
>> mohammed, gordon brown and jackson and finally from the academy aviation transportation i have ronald elliott you had the honor of introducing the president. [applause] i'm proud of our students and i hope that you will take a few minutes to see what kind of things these students are doing in our high school. let's give a big round of applause. [applause] now comes the fun part. all of the governors are invited to the first to go back and visit with these students and listen to them about these demonstration projects that they are doing because this is
exciting and this is what all of these efforts are all about. so, we will stand officially adjourned and the governors, please join me in the back and the audience can come in behind us [inaudible conversations] more from the national governors association coming up this weekend on c-span. tomorrow morning
privilege over his oval office recordings. >> the president may be right and how he reads the constitution but he may be wrong and if he is wrong who is there to tell him so? if there is no one than the president of course is free to pursue his course of interpretations and what then becomes of our constitutional government? the house judiciary committee has created a bipartisan task force to evaluate federal criminal statutes and to make recommendations for improvements. the task force met this morning hearing from a u.s. attorney, federal judges, the chair of the sentencing commission and federal public defender. this is about 90 minutes.
>> the task force will come to order and without objection we are authorized to declare at any time. we welcome our witnesses here today and at this time i will turn to the chair of the full committee mr. goodlatte to introduce the first witness. thank you for holding this hearing allowing me the honor to introduce the united states attorney that has represented us well in the district in virginia for the past several years.
someone that is interested in the enforcement of the law that the criminal law and public policy i'm delighted to have him here today to testify. welcome. in the u.s. district judge khe received her undergraduate degree from the college of notre virg in maryland and baltimore and her master's degree from western university. und who will be playing westernom te maabama in its first game. before attendingry law school, e was employed as a secondaryty of education teacher and received was her doctorate from westerneducao university college law and leavh reprising -- we welcome new do
judge. it's what the firm is to stepto9 in johnson. pracd washington?e in president georgpresident georgej 1992 she served as the chief judge in the northern district from march, 2001 to march the 2008. 1992. currently she serves as the ief chair of the criminal law committee in the judicialarch conference united states.hair of welcome. criminal law our next witness. the we welcome you back again. she served as the chair of the united states commission since december of 2010.
onissi a servicservice for the districf massachusetts and since 1994 having been nominated in the federal. prior to the appointment of the district court she served as th associate judge of thedist massachusettsri superior court.g in the united states district court for the district of boston. she also serves as a clerk to the late justice robert in massachusetts supreme judicial court. she then became an attorney in the civil division of the justice department and held a position of chief for the civil division of the office of the united states attorney for massachusetts.
she received her ba from radcliffe and jd from harvard law school. and she is the sister-in-law through many of you know whose office is right down the hall for several years and served as the chief of staff of chairman frank. frank. >> mr. chairman, if i might -- >> the chairman is recognized. >> i just want to say that i shortchanged the united states attorney and i never want to do that by leaving out his credentials. he's a graduate of the university of virginia and a university school of law and upon the graduation he served as a law clerk to the honorable john kerry the district of columbia court of appeals and he spent two years as a litigation associate at morrison in san francisco in addition to practicing law he has taught several classes and a lecture and has also lectured frequently at the u.s. department of
justice national advocacy center in columbia south carolina. prior to becoming the united states attorney he served 12 years as an assistant united states attorney in the astern district of columbia and he's prosecuted a broad spectrum of criminal matters. thank you mr. chairman. >> well we have several graduate. our last witness is mr. david patten. he's been an executive director and attorney and chief of the federal defenders of new york since july of 2011. from 2002 to 2008 he worked at the federal defenders as a trial attorney in the manhattan office and during that time he also served as a adjunct professor at nyu school of law. in 2008 he taught as an assistant professor at the university of alabama and from
2010 to 2011 as an associate professor of law at stanford law school read he currently teaches professional responsibility and criminal law as an adjunct professor of law at nyu. he clerked for the united states district court for the eastern district of virginia and graduate university of virginia law school we welcome you to the committee. we are expecting our first and only vote of the day at 10:15 to without objection members opening statements will be made a part of the record. you are recognized for your opening statement. any objections?
>> thank you for inviting the department of justice today and congressman for that nice introduction. we appreciate the opportunity to appear in today's hearing. last august at the remarks at the american bar association house of delegates migh by abbae attorney general of the united states spoke of his desire to forge a more just society and reform and strengthen america's criminal just as system. he said it is our duty to identify those areas we can improve in order to better advance the cause of justice for all americans and on behalf of the attorney general i want to thank the members of the task force for your pursuit of the goal of reform. your work has contributed and will continue to contribute in the discussion to make our system fair and efficient. the department has an interest in all of the issues the task force has explored and written testimony we address issues regarding so-called regulatory
crimes and possible uniform standards for federal crimes and criminal code reform issues which have been a major focus of the task force. i look forward to answering questions on those issues and other topics today. i've been in his opening statement we would like to use the very limited time to focus on the crucial in urgent need to improve the federal sentencing and corrections policies. crime reduction strategies have included a greatly expanded use of the criminal sanction. incarceration rates in the country have skyrocketed. the nation now has the greatest number of prisoners of any in the world. nearly one in every 100 adults in america is in prison or jail and that they rate is five times higher than that in western europe and other democracies. such extensive use of prison is expensive and unsustainable. currently the state and federal government spent $74 billion a year on incarceration.
the detention is now matched to almost a third of the overall operating budget compared to only about a quarter in the year 2,000. as a result of spending has increasingly displaced other crucial justice investment. the prosecution prevention and intervention and assistance to the state and local law-enforcement agencies. those in incarceration. attorney general has launched a smart on crime initiative that began back in august of last year. smart on crime requires all federal prosecutors that men and women with whom i work every day to ensure that we are devoting our efforts and resources to the most deserving of the federal common law charged. they augment the support for state and local law enforcement as well as our funding and other support of prevention and reentry programs. the goal is to maintain the ability to fulfil fulfill the th and function while also pursuing
other priorities in a comprehensive approach to the community safety. one important component is the reform of the sentencing practices for low-level drug offenders trade of the 217,000 people in custody today, near then half are serving drug related offenses. they have certain low-level federal crimes that will face the sentence is appropriate to their individual conduct. to most effectively address the issue of the congressional action is necessary. we strongly urge the task force and the full committee to get sentencing reform legislation this year. the department strongly supports the legislation introduced by congressman scott and the smarter sentencing act by modestly reducing statutory penalties for certain nonviolent offenders. the bill could allow billions of dollars to be reallocated to
other critical public safety priorities while enhancing the effectiveness of the federal sentencing system. kind of reform the department supports are already proven successful at the state level, state leaders, republicans and democrats have begun to transform sentencing in the policy across the country changes in state law have demonstrated it's possible to spend less money on incarceration without sacrificing public safety. in fact, many of the states have seen a drop in recidivism since they enacted the sentencing reform legislation. by controlling the spending shifting away from the overreliance on incarceration we can focus limited resources on the most important law enforcement priorities of violence prevention in vulnerable populations. the department is committed to an approach that is not only more efficient and effective at deterring the crime and recidivism but also consistent with the nation's commitment to treating all americans as equal under the law. we cannot achieve these goals without the congress. we urge you to seize this opportunity to make the call
justice system fair and keep the american people safe. thank you. >> at this time i recognize the judge for her opening statement. >> thank you for inviting me to testify today it is an honor to appear before you and such distinguished witnesses especially the colleague. i testify on the judicial conference of the united states. the committee wall that i chair overseas pretrial service system and reviews legislation and other issues relating to the administration of criminal law. my kennedy has watched the task force progress with interest.
we have submitted letters for the record and past hearings and i thank you for accommodating us with regards to that. i offer for your consideration today several strategies to address the pressing problem of over criminalization in the federal system. each of these points curbing over federalization, reforming the maximum sentences and guideline are in my written testimony. on the outset however i d outsih to emphasize that nature criminal justice reforms currently under consideration, front end and back and sentencinend ofsentencing refor, executive clemency and reforms to the sentencing guidelines will increase the federal judiciary workload. congress must provide the courts which currently are operating at 1997 staffing levels with adequate resources to shoulder those additional burden. the failure to do so will result
in further delays for your constituents and ultimately could have public safety consequences. for nearly a century the federal judiciary has expressed concern about the federalization of crime. the conference encourages the congress to conserve the federal courts and is distinctive judicial forms of limited jurisdiction in our system of federalism. it is the conference long-standing position that federal prosecution should be limited to charges that cannot or should not be prosecuted in the state court. to this end, the conference has identified five types of crimes that are appropriate for federal prosecution. first offenses against the federal government or its interests. second, criminal activity with substantial multistate or international aspects. third, criminal activity involving complex commercial or
institutional enterprises most effectively prosecuted using federal resources or expertise. for the mysterious high-level or widespread state or local government corruption and theft, criminal cases raising highly sensitive local issues. the conference also recommends congress review existing federal criminal statutes with the bold of eliminating provisions that no longer serve and in a central federal purpose and idea that i know has been discussed in the past hearings of the task force. another pressing problem related to the issue of over criminalization is the burgeoning population of the correctional system caused in part by the proliferation of crime carrying the mandatory minimum sentence. amandmaximum are wasteful of tar
dollars by unnecessarily increasing the correctional costs which are borne out by the bureau of prison and by the pretrial services system which is within the judiciary. for 60 years the judicial conference has consistently and vigorously opposed mandatory minimum sentences. mandatory minimums are incompatible with guideline sentencing, the point on which the judge may expand. in the absence of the mandatory the judges wouldn't have unfettered sentencing. the sentencing guidelines that have been carefully developed with the benefit of the sentencing commission's congressionally endorsed expertise would remain fully enforced. departures are instances of the guideline on the appeal for the reasonableness. mandatory minimums also cause disproportionality and sentencing by treating similarly
offenders who actually may pose very different risks to society. the judicial conference endorses amending section 9242 preclude the stacking of the counts and to clarify additional penalties only apply when one or more convictions have become final prior to the commission of the next event. thethey've already shared draft legislation with congress which i would be pleased to resubmit to the task force. one example of the significant cost of stacking is the case of weldon angelos the first time nonviolent offender whose 55 year sentence resulted from stacking mandatory minimums. i would urge you to consider whether taxpayers are served by spending $1.4 million or more to incarcerate mr. angelos for 55
years. that's the judicial conference has agreed to seek the legislation such as safety valves act of 2013. they have the sentencing act of 2013. legislation that i know several members of the task force have cosponsored. the third major public policy initiative that the judicial conference supports relating to the opera, was asian to april 2014 decision to amend the guidelines t to lower the base defense levels and the drug quantity table across the drug types. the commission is currently considering whether to make the decision retroactive. the judicial conference endorses these reforms on principles of fairness and nevertheless recognizing that they will impose a cost on the judiciary.
retroactivity in particular would cause a dramatic influx of offenders out of prison and into the provision system. an adequate resources or preparation was in peril public safety. the conference endorses retroactivity only if the release of the first wave of prisoners is the laid-back six months in order to give the system time to prepare for the first wave of the new supervisors and if the commission coordinates national training program among all of the affected agencies thank you for inviting me to testify today and for considering the conference views on curbing over federalization and reforming the mandatory minimum sentences and amending the sentencing guidelines. i look forward to answering your questions. >> good morning to everyone.
chairman baucus, ranking member combusting was members of the task force, thank you so much for providing me the opportunity to testify on behalf of the united states sentencing commitment. we are so pleased the house judiciary committee that set up the criminalization task force has been waiting for this hearing and we are all here with such a distinguished panel. the commission identifies overcapacity in the priorit thes to the amendment cycles this year and last year. in doing so the commission is carrying out the statutory duty. the prison population will exceed the capacity of the federal prison. while the prison populations have begun to decline slightly due to the reform, the federal prison population has grown by about a third in the past decade and by 52% in the high-security
facilities. the drug spending makes up a third of the majority of the prisoners serving in the federal bureau of prisons. so, they are an extremely important nature of the federal prison population. can you hear me better now? usually hearing me isn't a problem. [laughter] a commission set out to determine ways to address the crisis in the federal prison budget and population that are fair and appropriate. we sought out the perspectives of the law enforcement to be fair that any proposed changes would be consistent with the goal of promoting public safety. the commission found in its 2011 review of mandatory minimum penalties that certain provisions apply to broadly are set to high or both. and as a result, certain mandatory minimum penalties are applied inconsistently from district to district and even within the districts.
we also found that 23% of all of the drug offenders were usually low-level. they most often the subject of entry minimum penalties that is who didn't receive any kind of relief for the mandatory minimum like the safety valves or street level dealers are many steps below the high-level suppliers or leaders of the drug organizations. we are concerned about the penalties that apply and relief that is granted to different demographic groups. mandatory minimums have contributed to the growth and affordable prison populations. the number tells a story. the members of offenders that were subject to the mandatory minimum penalty of the sentencing increased from 29,603 in 1995 to 75,000 in 2010. a 155% increase.
so the bipartisan seven-member commission has accordingly unanimously recommended to congress reduce statutory maximum penalties for drug trafficking and the provisions of the fair sentencing act of 2010 should be made retroactive and congress should consider expanding the safety valve that is allowing sentences below the minimum penalties to in nonviolent low-level drug offenders to offenders with slightly greater criminal history than currently permitted. the commission also this year unanimously approved an amendment to the guideline to reduce by two levels does a signethoseassigned to most drug trafficking offenders based on the drug quantity. why? they were originally set slightly above the mandatory penalties so with minimal, no history would benefit from pleading guilty and otherwise cooperating. congress subsequently created the safety valve which gives low-level offenders a greater
benefit to cooperating. so setting the guidelines above the minimum is no longer necessary for that purpose. in deed after a similar reduction for the offenders in 2007, the rate of which the crack cocaine defendants pled guilty and cooperated with authorities remained stable. in addition at the time the original guideline levels were set the guidelines only had one enhancement, but now it has 14 enhancements with specific conduct of that reduces someone'reduces somewhatto thero heavily on the drug quantity and setting the guideline levels. we were encouraged. we recently did a reset it to some study of those offenders whose sentences were reduced following the reduction for the offenders. after five years there was no statistically significant difference in the recidivism rate between those offenders and those other ones that were released in the previous year after serving in the full sentence. the study indicated a modest
reduction in the drug sentences may not lead to any increase in recidivism. the amendment we approved this spring if it goes into effect on november 1 is an important but modest and i underline modest as the first step to address the crowd and consisten inconsistenw and public safety but more comprehensive change needs to come from congress. the commission has been encouraged to see the bipartisan legislation introduced here in the house and the senate that is consistent with the recommendations we have made. we hope to see further progress towards enacting legislation in this area and stand ready to work with you and others in congress to thank you very much. mr. chairman and as you said i'm the federal public defender in new york city.
it's good to see you. together with my defender colleagues from around the country and court appointed attorneys who are assigned to cases we collectively represent all of those accused in several crimes who were too poor to afford a lawyer. nationwide that means we represent over 80% of all of the defendants in the criminal justice. and i can tell you we are grateful to the committee for holding these hearings. it's a very important topic of overcommercialization. when i think of the term over her criminalization i think of a quote by the late harvard law professor that wrote legal condemnation is a necessary but terrible thing to be used sparingly, not promiscuously. the justice system has become remarkably promiscuous by any
measure. whether it is by the size of the federal kernel code whether it is the sheer number of those arrested and prosecuted for the federal offenses which is tripled since 1980 or most significant most measured by the number of people, the federal government in prison. the federal prison population has increased by 1000% since 1980. in the past ten years it is increased at a rate three times of that in the state prison populations and this is at a time that historically low crime rate. so it isn't an increasing crime that is driving the increase in incarceration. of the federal prosecution of the basic routine crimes that were once the province of the state and local wall and force the con and number two, that vast increases in the severity
of the federal sentences largely driven by mandatory minimums that prevents the sentencing judges from imposing what would otherwise be reasonable common sense appropriate levels of punishment. you have already heard a great deal about the human toll the state of affairs has taken and the physical toll. i would like to focus in my brief time on the told that it's taking on the very structure of federal common law justice system and what do i mean by that? i will summarize it with one number. 2.7. 2.7 is the percentage of the federal criminal defendants to go to trial. it's a state of affairs that caused the supreme court two years ago to the state level just as today's for the most part the system of pleased, not of trials.
it poses a serious threat to the quality of justice. the answer is straightforward disappearing try your rate corresponds precisely with that yarn is increase in power we have given prosecutors disappearing and mandatory sentencing regimes they announced for control over many cases from start to finish. if they were pleading guilty versus going to trial that can be enormous orders of magnitude, ten, 20 or 30 years or more. why is that a problem.
they are the most direct way that ordinary citizens can check the government overreach. they are vital to the constitutional democracy like ours, and they also happen to be the best way that we know in the history of the world that transparently and accountable he getting at the truth of various matters. juries teach us that sometimes government agents make mistakes. sometimes witnesses make mistakes. sometimes witnesses lie. they get lost for only 2.7% of defendants can go to trial because they can't risk the decades of additional time they might face if they go to trial not based on the severity of the offense but purely based on their exercises of the trioval rate. it is a system that the founders
would surely find unrecognizable and it does great damage to the constitutional value. we are going to your questions from the member and go directly to mr. scott and i will reserve my questions if there is enough time. >> thank you mr. chairman and and all of the witnesses for the testimony. when the mandatory minimum i want to thank the judicial conference for their opposition had thepropositionhad they beene the common sense minorities and waste taxpayers money and frequently require the judges to impose the sentence is that violate common sense. if we eliminate the minimums not just in the smarter sentencing act that the safety valve act
they would sentence below the minimum they violate common sense. it would've bee would be departe sentencing guidelines and an appealed issue. >> yes as i noted in my comments whether it is the departure specified under the guidelines or the variance pursuant to the 335factors of the sentencing rem act. >> on the right true activity you mentioned the fact that they reset the data that a rate statistically insignificant it is lower than those.
we need to look to slow the work of the sentencing commission. >> they slow up our work. >> if i had a wish list i could probably go through them but i think right now we feel as if we are bipartisan commission working at the crossroads if we worked well with congress we feel we have our hearings at this point there are no statutory barriers to doing what we want and there are certain things that we will love. but if we were able to work very well on the whole area of recommending doing our own work with respect to the guidelines. >> thank you. are you prepared to discuss the prison issues? >> yes i think so your honor. can you tell me some of the present programs that helped reduce the recidivism?
>> the bureau has created every federal prison they actually now director samuels as an assistant director that focuses exclusively on the reentry programs. it isn't. if that we spend time for people, men and women that are incarcerated to develop skills so they get out to be productive and in our view the vast majority of them want very much to make choices that are reductive and not criminal but they need assistance and there are programs for anger management to substance abuse counseling to job skills and educational programs on up to the college classes. we are working hard in virginia to get some of the online content providers like liberty university to provide content to prisoners in the virginia system. there is a great bipartisan movement across the country to provide more of these very tangible services to those that are incarcerated to help reduce recidivism.
>> the studies are ongoing because a lot of the problems are new. anecdotally we have a lot of evidence to work and a second chance act which i think that you pioneered has been hugely successful and we urge that it continue to be fully funded. >> what about an appointment programs? >> it also provides tangible skills to those incarcerated and translates to job opportunities when they get out to read it also provides the bond opportunity or certification for those incarcerated and then those are very portable skills that are used on the outside. >> that pays for itself right? >> it does. >> is that compared to the recidivism rate? >> it is absolutely lower. when you have a skill in the joe job you are less likely to make a criminal choice.
>> for those in the opportunity to get into you at th -- peopled in prison programs generally have a lot few disciplinary actions when they are. >> can any of the panelists discussed the need to get these mens rea requirement before we prosecute people? >> the vast majority of the statutes include a specific standard. there is a role for the careful use of some strict liability consensus when they are highly regulated industries for health and safety or environmental protection. there are occasions when we delete the statutes that provide the liability are appropriate. they just have to be very judiciously